TAIPEI, Taiwan, 16 August 2010
Dozens of Tibetans and their supporters mounted a protest in Taipei, accusing Beijing of using an exhibition of Tibetan artefacts as propaganda.
More than 130 Tibetan cultural relics from monasteries and museums, on loan from the mainland, have been on display at Taipei’s National Palace Museum since 1 July.
The exhibition, called Tibet: Treasures from the Roof of the World, is a sign of warming cross-strait ties but has angered Tibetans.
“This exhibition has helped the Chinese authorities cover up the massive killings in their invasion of Tibet, during which at least 1.2 million Tibetans were slaughtered,” regional Tibetan Youth Congress head Tashi Tsering said yesterday.
“We regret that the brutality is not shown in the exhibits,” he said after police barred demonstrators from entering the museum. The protesters also claimed that items on show have been looted.
The protesters demanded that a portrait of exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama also be included in the exhibition but that call was rejected.
The Dalai Lama has lived in exile in northern India since fleeing Tibet in 1959 after a failed uprising against Beijing’s rule.
Mainland authorities claim to have developed the economy in the Himalayan region and improved living conditions for Tibetans. But critics accuse Beijing of suppressing Tibetan Buddhist culture.